74
26 Dec 13 at 12 pm

kedreeva:

Okay I have a LOT of feels and ideas and theories and headcanons regarding last night’s episode, but I’m going to have to start here.

I’m going to have to start with that skull.

It’s a canid skull, from some member of the Canidae family. Maybe it’s a wolf, and considering that he used to hunt werewolves, that’s as good a guess as any. But there are three things I’d like to point out

  • The first is that nothing else (except the map, which I’m not counting on the technicality that you can’t see the marks in normal light) in the room speaks of hunting, which makes a random wolf skull incongruous with the rest of the setting in terms of general decoration.
  • The second is that this is Chris Argent’s desk; he has recently “retired” from hunting (although clearly he’s been up to something!) and has voiced more than once that he wants out of that life; that he wants to keep Allison out of that life too. Leaving a wolf skull on display on his desk like a trophy (center of the desk placement) seems really unlikely.
  • The third is that if that is a wolf skull (which is not impossible), it is one with a steep forehead slope, which is atypical. The teeth directly behind the canines are also a bit crowded, which is atypical of wild members of the Canidae family.

Which leads me to believe that it is, in fact, not a wolf skull at all; I believe it’s a dog skull.

And we all remember the story Chris told about the rabid dog?

What if it was his dog?

That skull looks about right for a medium to large sized dog (depending on breed), maybe a German shepherd or a doberman; you know, a good dog for a young hunter.

So here I am, thinking that maybe Chris Argent grew up with a puppy. Maybe when he was little he found a stray or his mom or dad brought it home from a hunt because the werewolves they just exterminated were keeping a pet. Of course they don’t tell Chris this right away, because he’s young, like six or seven and they at least wait until double digits before laying it on kids that the monsters in the closet are real.

Of course, Chris doesn’t know. He loves the dog. He probably names it Scooter or Rex or Lucky or something else little kids name dogs. Patches. Idk. And she’s a lesson in responsibility right then, because if Chris wants to keep her, he has to care for her himself. So he does. He mows the lawn and does the dishes for an allowance to feed her and buy her toys, and he teaches Lucky tricks like sit and stay and roll over while sitting in Kate’s baby room so that she can see too. Chris teaches her to lay down and later, to play dead.

She never gets the last one quite right because Chris is probably her world and her tail always wags even when she’s doing her best to close her eyes and lay still for him.

It’s not like it matters, if he had a tail he’d be wagging it too.

And then one day, he catches his mom and dad arguing, and he knows it’s about him because he heard his name before he came in. ‘He’s soft’ his mom was saying, and of course he’s soft, he’s only human. His dad tells his mom that he’s not, that he’ll be fine, he’ll do what needs done. She spots Chris at the door of the kitchen, and he’s only twelve years old, so she just smiles and ruffles his hair as she goes to check on Kate.

After that, it happens quickly. Lucky isn’t even old, barely seven, and she starts getting irritable. At first Chris thinks maybe it’s a bad day. Maybe it’s a bad mood, or she doesn’t like the new food. He thinks maybe he did something. She snaps at Chris, her teeth chased with bewildered apology kisses because she doesn’t know why she’s doing this either. She’s not eating and she’s not sleeping well. She’s sick. She’s mad.

She’s rabid.

And when she nearly takes Gerard’s hand off one evening when he goes to pat her on the head, he puts her in a cage. She chews the bars until her gums bleed. She howls, and even though she’s in the garage, Chris can hear it where he’s got his head under his pillow two floors up. It sets Kate to crying. His mom says they’ll take Lucky to the vet in the morning.

She doesn’t last til morning, and neither does Chris. He’s down in the garage, half asleep and leaning against the cage when Gerard finds him, one hand through the bars with his fingers buried in her thick coat. His eyes are red from crying, but Gerard can see that Lucky’s chest still rises and falls, can see the weak struggle as she attempts to turn to Chris. She’s broken her own back struggling to get out.

"She never got bit," Chris says softly when he sees Gerard. It’s an accusation, the first he’s ever dared make against his parents. He doesn’t know which one did it, but he knows this wasn’t an accident.

"Are you going to make her suffer?" Gerard asks, bland and emotionless.

Chris doesn’t.

The vet’s office is an hour away and he knows where his father’s shotgun is. He drags the cage into the backyard where there’s space and soft ground. They live away from people, so no one will see. He lays the gun on top of the cage and gets to his knees on the damp pine needles and when he puts his fingers through the cage to her, she still struggles to bite.

She is his best friend, and she doesn’t recognize him at all.

He won’t forget the gunshot or the blood that blossoms from her chest as she flags to utter stillness. He won’t ever forget how her tail doesn’t wag because she is not playing this time. He watches the light leaving her eyes and knows that he will never forget the digging, or the sound of her body hitting the bottom.

When he finally does go inside, hands filthy and eyes puffy, he doesn’t say a word to either of his parents. His father looks proud, satisfied maybe, as he looks to his wife as though to say “see?”

Chris doesn’t see it, but his mother looks disappointed. This was not a hunt. This was a mercy kill. This was sympathy. She still thinks Chris is soft. They’ll train him, like they always planned, but it won’t be perfect.

And later that night, as she is rocking Kate to sleep, she will think that this time, they’ll start sooner. This time, Gerard will help. This one, this small child sleeping in her arms… this one will be ruthless. This one will be the perfect hunter.

Chris won’t be, not by his mother’s standards, not by his father’s standards either. He’ll remember that he had to bury his very first friend, and when he finally returns to visit her, with a daughter of his own back home, he will take something back with him. He’ll have it cleaned and mounted so there’s no chance he’ll ever forget.

A solid reminder of everything he doesn’t want Allison to become. He’ll put it on his desk like a reprimand for even thinking he could bring her into that sort of life safely. He’d thought he could protect her. He still thinks he is.

So maybe it is a wolf skull. But maybe, just maybe… it’s not.

 2678
25 Dec 13 at 12 pm

chasingshhadows:

thebitepodcast:

alphaofthefandom:

chasingshhadows:

I don’t trust Stiles.

Because he is the one character the writers want us to trust. 

They have been emphasizing and reiterating and referencing all these reasons why Stiles should be trusted as a narrative tool - his isn’t being messed with mentally, he’s had no contact with the Alpha pack that fucks with memories (all the werewolves), he isn’t hallucinating (Allison), he isn’t losing time (Lydia). Every other character is having these things happen or are otherwise shrouded in mystery (i.e. Deaton and Morell). 

But not Stiles.

Not only that, but he’s become obviously and dramatically the head of all things “information.” From the bank research to dealing with the Darach and all its lore - Stiles is the one in charge. They keep making references to how he’s always been right before (see above) and gave us a list of 4 suspects that we are supposed to be working off of - Harris, Cora, Deaton and Lydia. 

And that last gif is basically a flashing sign of “No one listened to me before when I was right so you should all listen to me now!” 

Which is exactly why I don’t trust him.

The writers want us to trust him. They’ve made that glaringly obvious. All of the other teenagers are being messed with and all of the adults - including Derek - have elements of missing information or otherwise shadiness that tell us we can’t trust everything we know or that we think we know.

Except with Stiles.

Not to mention that he was alone in Derek’s loft with Peter Hale, who is just as shady-as-fuck this season as he’s always been - and given Stiles first reaction to Lydia losing time, it’s incredibly suspicious that Peter isn’t on his list. He’s also the most vulnerable out of all of them, as the human without immunity or intense training. Of course being the Sheriff’s son that is also in the know puts a giant target on his back.

This is not at all to say I think he’s the mastermind behind everything - or anything really. I think he’s just as much a pawn in this situation as the rest of them. Either he’s being controlled or his memories are being altered or something.

And I’ll say it again, Jeff’s favorite thing to do is wave his right hand loudly and obnoxiously over there while pulling off the season twist with his left. What we see is never what we get and there’s always a subplot that is really the most important one. 

And another thing - it’s always someone we know. We always meet all of the players early on in the season - Peter and Kate and Matt and Gerard…. and Lydia and Jackson and even Scott who have pulled off subplots all on their own.

um… I think i’m the only one who feels like this is bullshit. We all know Stiles background history, we all know his personality and what he’s like. He wouldn’t hurt Scott like that, we all know it… I certainly do not believe Stiles Stilinski could ever be a bad guy.

This post isn’t calling Stiles a “bad guy”…it’s saying that the writers are making Stiles seem reliable on purpose, so that we take him at his word and trust his perception of reality more than that of any other character. Which, logically, is something they could do in order to hide what’s really going on and deceive the viewers. For example, there have been multiple posts circulating around tumblr this week with people discussing the identity of the dark druid behind the murders…almost all of those posts are based on Stiles’ list, as if those the only possible suspects. That’s because Stiles has been positioned as the voice of reason, the expert researcher, the puzzle solver. If you were writing a mystery novel, you would want to create a reliable character like that and then have that character lead your reader down the wrong path, to make your twist ending more of a surprise. Nobody is saying that Stiles himself is the murderer, just saying we should be careful not to take everything he says at face value.

This literally says what I was saying BETTER than I said it. *slow claps*

(via for-the-other-shoe)

intergalacticju:

Have you noticed how Cora (and Peter a little bit) seem to be putting Derek on a pedestal he can’t reach? It makes me wonder how the Hale family actually worked.

We like to write about them being this possibly hippy-ish, loving, large family, but what if they were actually stern and speciest and high and mighty? I mean it’s something to think about, I think.

Cora was eleven when the Hale fire happened. Yes, we don’t know what happened to her during those six years, but she comes back into Derek’s life immediately expecting certain standards and being disappointed and harsh to her older brother like he doesn’t meet up to them, like there were standards to be held to in the Hale family that he’s making a disappointment of. Even Peter acts like Derek is a failure, and yes Derek doesn’t know what he’s doing but I feel part of this is a pedestal his family is trying to put him on he was never born to do.

It just really makes me feel like the Hale family had these strict rules and way of life and Derek didn’t fit into it. After all, right now in the show we do know he was the popular jock at school who had loads of human friends. How do you not know how to act around humans, then?

And if this is the case, then maybe part of why Kate was a secret wasn’t an age thing (in the book, which is not canon, establishes that werewolves didn’t care much about age so that might not have been a factor) but a human thing, which can then add onto the guilt Derek carries that his family is dead. This could explain Derek reverting back to a certain way of acting that his family may have wanted him to convey.

It’s sad to think, but Derek might have actually been the nice one in his family.

(via for-the-other-shoe)

 15
23 Dec 13 at 12 pm

dreamofflight:

image

After Isaac got a shower, Scott gave him the largest pair of sweats he had. They hung low, barely hanging on around Isaac’s slender hips, but they both let out snorts of laughter when they realized they were two inches too short, leaving Isaac with high waters. Scott pulled out the…

: After Isaac got a shower, Scott gave him the largest pair of sweats he...
 1557
22 Dec 13 at 12 pm

sinyhale:

rebloggable by request

(via for-the-other-shoe)

onlymystories:

Posting another fic piece that I meant to expand on but am realizing I will probably never get to it. I think it can stand alone as an unsatisfactory one-shot but if anyone wants to take the idea and run with it, go right ahead. 

Chris and Derek had decided that the humans, well Lydia and Stiles since Allison was already doing hunter work, needed to start training with traditional weapons so they weren’t liabilities in a fight. Chris was teaching them how to use a rifle today.

Correction. Chris was teaching Lydia. He thought he was teaching Stiles. Allison was practicing. But then, no one actually knew that Stiles had done this before. With good reason. He hadn’t actually given any interest in carrying a weapon beyond his bat. 

Stiles sighs. “I’m doing this under protest.” But he picks up the rifle and looks out at the targets. Ten of them for himself, Lydia, and Allison. 

Lydia had hit four of her targets and she was currently scribbling formulas on a piece of paper. Stiles assumes it was to help her understand trajectories and turn shooting into a mathematical problem. Which was fine and all for target practice but it wouldn’t help her in an actual life or death scenario.

Allison hits eight of her targets, missing one nearly hidden in brush and the farthest one out. She seemed pissed about only getting the bullseye on two, even though Stiles wants to point out that a bullet in a body still takes the target out, even if it isn’t an immediate kill. Allison’s bullet to the dummy’s ribs is still effective.

He thinks about telling her that really, the heart isn’t the best place to aim anyway. But they’ll probably get that anyway. 

Read More

thegrumpiestwolf:

keep-this-dream:

spuzz:

I’ve been thinking a lot about this post lately.

I don’t know you guys, I keep seeing this post around and I didn’t want to add anything to the commentary for various reasons, mainly that I love the OP, agree that Scott is a hero who cares and I love the OP. But I’m having a really big problem with where this post has now gone kind of encapsulated by those tags. Stiles is not an antihero to me. He’s just not. When you say antihero you’re implying things about the character that seem to have gone to the other side of the extreme of “Stiles is perfect and awesome.” That he doesn’t have morals, that he’s not courageous.

Neither of these extreme interpretations rings true to me. I understand the want to go to the other extreme because of how frequently Teen Wolf fandom erases Scott’s own heroism for the sake of propping up Stiles but ignoring Stiles own heroic aspects and applying this other extreme to him rings false to me as well.

To start I want to get three things out of the way:

1. This is not going to be an argument that Scott is not THE hero of Teen Wolf. Scott is the hero of Teen Wolf. He is the main character, the main driving force of the show, this is about his journey. He is the TEEN WOLF. This is an argument about the contrast between the two and about a specific interpretation of Stiles character that I’ve come to disagree with.

2. Stiles is a teenager, Scott is a teenager. These two characters are still growing and maturing. They are going to make mistakes. They are going to be fuck up. Allison is a hero, she is a hero who has stumbled and faltered but that doesn’t erase the heroic things she has done and her service to help. This is the same for Scott and Stiles. The point of heroes is not that they are perfect, it’s that they are imperfect. Removing flaws from characters and having them make the right and good decisions all the time is boring. There’s thus then nothing for the character to learn, nowhere for the character to grow. If I wanted to watch a show about characters who have their shit together I probably wouldn’t be watching any show ever.

Teenagers especially have growth and learning to do. It’s called Teen Wolf for a reason and that reason is because they’re teens.

3. I have maintained they are both heroes and on a heroes journey together. That’s my interpretation of the show. Scott with Stiles, Stiles with Scott. You cannot and should not separate these two ever. They are the Watson and Sherlock of our times, okay? Get over it.

Now to get on with it: I think a lot of people seem to mistake Scott and Stiles’ differences as hero and antihero when really they’re idealism versus realism and sidekick versus hero. The main issue is the Jackson storyline and their solutions. But the problem here is that people seem to forget really important details:

1. When the Kanima was thought to be Lydia, Stiles was the leading force in not believing it was her (he was right) and attempting to shield her from the pack (he was right). People then point to Jackson being the actual Kanima and Stiles reaction which is to advocate killing him. The issue here is Stiles’ relationship with Jackson and Lydia. First of all, he doesn’t believe Lydia is the Kanima which means the pack is attempting to kill an innocent person.

Second of all, Jackson is a bully. Has bullied Stiles and Scott for what we can assume is his whole school career, he doesn’t not believe nor see a good side to Jackson for really good reason. We have see Jackson insult Stiles, insult Scott, be verbally abusive to Lydia, insult and belittle Stiles’ father on at least two occasions. There is no reason for Stiles or Scott to give Jackson the benefit of the doubt.

Third of all, the audience has information Stiles (and pack) does not have. We know Jackson’s background (not that it helps us figure out his motives sufficiently IMO) but most importantly at the time Scott, Stiles and Allison are having the main conversation WE know that Jackson is being controlled. Stiles, Scott and Allison do not know this yet, they’re getting there but they’re rapidly running out of time. Why? Because Jackson is killing people. To death. It’s a very serious life and death situation and their solution at that point is untenable.

Killing him is stopping him and at that time they don’t actually have any solution besides putting him in a van in the woods which backfires at the end of the episode and into the next where more deaths happen. Killing him is not the cleanest solution but it is a solution. It’s a solution that a LOT of heroes make. Think of any comic book you like for instance. A lot of evil characters have sympathetic back stories, are being controlled by circumstances out of their control. But the greater good outweighs the life of one man and thus a viable solution is to eliminate the threat entirely. Shooting at Derek is also a good practical solution. Derek would most likely survive it would take down the leader and cause confusion. Allison’s solution is actually really dangerous at that point and would most likely cause more damage to the pack. That’s what is causing a lot of the tension in that scene (as a side note, one of the reasons Scott’s pack functions so well is that they debate and discuss and listen to each other. Allison and Scott both listen and take seriously Stiles’ suggestion of killing Jackson but dismiss it and Stiles drops it and supports them. Allison and Stiles discuss two plans and weigh the odds together, as a team. Derek’s pack doesn’t discuss anything, it’s a dictatorship, not a democracy. Doesn’t make for good morale or decision making.)

The differences between Scott’s plan and Stiles’ plan is idealism versus realism. Scott’s plan comes from the heart, it’s definitely workable, it ends up okay because Jackson gets a redemption (SORT OF? Or however you interpret that finale I guess and what your feelings are on Jackson) and it’s born out of knowing that something else is probably happening that they need to stop. Stiles’ is born of realism. He knows Jackson is killing someone, they’re running out of time, people are dying, they should eliminate the threat. Stiles, as a sidekick does, immediately drops him plan and actually helps Scott stay on track in the very next episode when Jackson threatens Allison and Scott wants to kill him. He drops it. He’s done, he’s mentioned it as an option and that’s it. An antihero would kill Jackson.

2. A lot of the popular interpretation of Stiles’ character lately seems to involve saying he doesn’t give a shit about anyone but two-three people and that’s he’s an asshole. Which, to me, seems like a weird reading of the show. We can take that interpretation and say, okay he does only care about Scott and his father. That still doesn’t actually make him an antihero because he still does things to help and save others even if it’s at the service of saving people he loves. This is a hero thing, it’s making the sacrifice because you love people. You love 2 people, you love an IDEA and maybe not people, you love 1 person, you love 1 billion people. You love something, you make the sacrifice. The end. But Stiles has shown he does care about people and that he thinks pretty critically about the decisions he makes.

When we talk about caring we can talk about Derek. Stiles has shown pretty great empathy towards Derek. Derek and Stiles share a pretty weird relationship with each other, actually. Stiles knows who Derek is in the very first episode, he’s remembered his family, Derek’s name, his history. He remembers this all the way up to the end of the series when he confronts Chris Argent about Derek’s family (of werewolves, of which Stiles is pretty immediately excepting of BTW) burning alive. He is empathetic to the point of anger for Derek’s family and for Derek AND for Scott. He is confronting a dangerous man on the behalf of the idea that you killing people, werewolf people included, is WRONG. In this same episode he also again puts his own life in danger to help kill the Alpha. Which is for Scott but it’s also for Derek, it’s for Allison, it’s for basically everyone in that scene. Just as Jackson does it to help everyone. These are heroic actions that aren’t selfish.

His main concern in confronting Jackson is the fact that he’s killing people. TO DEATH. His concern is that people are dying.

He takes the reins on holding Erica and showing a lot of concern for her wellbeing and health despite the fact she’s been was an asshole to him and hit him over the head with his car part. He still talks to her, listens to her and seems to forget it entirely.

He stands up to Peter and bargains for Lydia’s life and resists temptation (practically a mythological storyline right there). He stands up to Gerard and basically sacrifices himself. He stands up to Chris. These are all heroic moments in Stiles life.

A huge part of the episode of Battlefield is Stiles WANTING to help and NEEDING to help but not being capable (in his mind) of doing so. Basically Stiles emulates Scott, he wants to DO Scott’s job but what he learns at the finale is that he can’t do Scott’s job, he doesn’t need to. He just needs to be there, to support and to do what HE does best. Put shit together, assist. Support. Sidekickery.

Characters have priorities. This is not a problem to have. Scott has priorities, Scott cares and loves his mother, Stiles and Allison. That is his pack. This doesn’t mean he doesn’t also care about other stuff and people and things, he shows this multiple times (mainly with Erica, Lydia and sometimes Jackson). Stiles loves his father and Scott and also cares about Lydia. He has shown capacity to care about lives outside of those two-three people and it’s silly to erase that. People have priorities, this isn’t a bad thing. We prioritize all the time. Otherwise we could never get anything done or move forward. This doesn’t make one selfish or an antihero.

Would Stiles sacrifice everything to save his dad? Most decidedly yes. Would Scott do that for his mother? We’ve seen that already. These two things are the same. These are reasonable priorities to have. They are family. Some things come before some other things. This is a mature worldview. There’s also nothing wrong with having a small circle of people to love, some people do this. I am one such person because I’m shy, occasionally very introverted and anxious. It doesn’t make me selfish.

Scott also has the capacity to care and focus on more people because he’s the LEADER and he has the abilities to do so. He’s the LEADER, the show is setting for his whole job to be leading these people and figuring how to save them. He can do this because he is the main hero of the show, he has the powers etc. It’s not Stiles’ job as a character to do this, he doesn’t have the abilities, it’s not his JOB in the story. His job is to help, to guide, to inform, to service. He is an informed sidekick and future guide to the McCall pack. He is the Deaton of the McCall pack.

I think part of this whole thing is that in fandom, there is a confusion and breakdown of the roles on the show. Scott is the hero, Stiles is the sidekick.

Sidekicks are ALSO heroes and can often be the focus of certain plots, side stories, back stories etc. there’s nothing wrong with say a Derek/Stiles fic where Stiles is the hero of said story. Because as a fic writer you are basically looking off to the side of canon and saying “hey, what is this person up to right now/future/past/alternate universe?” Off to the side, is the key there. Stiles isn’t the main focus of the show, so applying the same type of hero characterizations to Stiles makes Stiles out to be close to a bad guy. This conflation of the two characters and their roles has led to erasure of Scott and that’s not good. Okay? It’s not.

But it’s also not good, to me, to then go to the other extreme and say “Scott is perfect and Stiles is an asshole” because that’s not what the show is telling me.

4. There is a dark side to Stiles character. He went out looking for a dead body for funsies, he taunted Scott when he was not really himself over something pretty petty, he wanted to shoot Derek in the head. But these things don’t erase the majority of the good things that he has done, it’s also not the overhwelming majority of his character. It’s a part of him, yes. As Scott’s obsession with Allison is a part of him but doesn’t erase he heroic things he’s done. These things are part of a well rounded character. Characters with flaws and arguments and fuck ups.

Stiles lies, he lies frequently to his father and manipulates him. But he does this with purpose and is never shown to be comfortable with it and it seems to weigh heavily on his mind (in fact it’s a driving force of his whole unfinished arc in season two). It’s painful. It’s not willy nilly lying. It’s lying with a sacrificial purpose. That’s pretty fucking heroic.

That’s what makes them interesting, that’s what makes Stiles particularly interesting to me. But I’m not sure that saying “Stiles is an asshole” rings true to me. Stiles is very snarky, he mocks. When he mocks Scott he does it out of love and affection (as Scott does to him), this is their friendship. When he’s mean to characters it’s usually because a character is mean to him (see: Jackson). He’s never shown to be particularly dark though. A dark character on this show is Kate, is Gerard, is Derek when he’s high on hubris and teenagers. We don’t even see Isaac as a particularly dark character because of the one scene he has where he wants to murder Lydia for Nice Guy reasons. Because later on, he’s a hero and doing heroic things. Danny is happy his ex is harmed and his best friend is Jackson but Danny is mainly seen as awesome otherwise. In show canon, Lydia makes out with Scott yet it’s quickly forgiven by Allison (after a little revenge). These are just aspects to these people, not their overwhelming characteristics. We take them as a whole interpretation, as moments in lives. If we just take Scott’s character as all the times he’s with Allison and ignore everything else, you get a really annoying Scott. If you just take Stiles as all the times he lies and wanting to see a dead body, you get a really dark Stiles. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with doing so especially in a fic interpretation or au idea or whatever. But thinking critically one must realize that’s not everything they are.

5. What I’m advocating here is not really much. You can interpret characters however you wish, it’s fun, it’s fandom. Whatever. But what I’m saying is here is why I disagree.

I think Jeff has actually (surprisingly) created characters that are pretty well rounded and three dimensional. They are not the extremes, they’re not perfect. They’re just a bunch of teenagers.

this my lady was perfect

BRAVO AND THANK YOU this is exactly what i needed and i would not have been able to explain myself so neatly, thank you.

(Source: shieldsexual, via hungrylikethewolfie)

hungrylikethewolfie:

suaine:

I think Lydia Martin has been shown to have more agency than people generally think because of the way we tend to define agency as what Allison does - going out and physically kicking ass.

It’s true that Lydia’s storyline puts more force on her and limits her more than Allison’s does. It is also true that this immediately causes people to react defensively because of all the ways women are denied agency in our beloved narratives.

But agency is more than going out and doing things. It is the unfettered ability to affect and shape the world. And it’s a concept that by default has to bend under the restrictions of a fictional narrative. No character has real agency, because they exist at the whim of a creator. Agency and structure always compete and when we discuss agency of a fictional character we have to be aware that we’re limited not just by the usual structures (as when discussing people) but also narrative conventions and the meta level at which we discuss things.

For example, if you look at Dr Manhattan in the context of the universe he inhabits, he is the theoretical impossibility of a person with full unlimited agency. Absolutely everything bends to his will. He is quite deliberately designed to be an emerging god. But from a meta perspective he is the worst kind of character. His very existence nullifies all plot or tension. He can not exist in the universe which is why he, as the author’s tool, knows that he has to remove himself from the story, from caring, from doing anything to affect it.

Lydia Martin has shitty things happening to her. She exists in a world that does not value intelligence as much as it values strength or beauty.

But Lydia Martin is also the engineer of Jackson’s lacrosse career. She is the one openly pushing Scott to play in that first game. After being attacked and traumatized the first time, Lydia puts herself back together and continues to rule the school. She is the one building molotov cocktails. When she wants to hurt Jackson, she goes out and finds Scott and makes out with him. She tries to find Jackson at the dance.

What we see of Lydia in season 1 is all agency. Now, the problem here is that in relation to the main plot, Lydia Martin is not informed. She doesn’t have all the facts to act upon the threats we know are coming for her. So her agency is at first severely limited specifically in relation to the main plot, not at all in general.

And the interesting thing is that in s2, she and Jackson get paralleling narratives about mind-control and being used by others for horrific ends. But what I want to talk about is how they are presented.

Jackson has no control over any of it. He literally becomes a tool, without memory and with almost or entirely no conscious control over anything he does. He is also used to kill people. He becomes an object. And, in fact, he loses his voice. We see just enough of him to realize that from episode 5 onward, we very rarely see Jackson in control of anything he does, whether or not he’s in full kanima mode. There are moments when he snaps out of it, but they are few and far between and they are highlighted to show us exactly how far gone he is. Not even the choice to kill himself is his on the lacrosse field, as revealed in the finale. Jackson has been stripped of all agency.

Now, Lydia Martin in s2. She’s being threatened and manipulated and left to fend for herself by her idiot friends. But that’s just the thing. Peter has to struggle with her. He can’t control her much or for long. We see her black out and lose time, yes, but Peter has to appear to her. He has to flirt with her and get her to accept him and even after the revelation of who he really is, he needs her compliance.

The scene at the beginning of Party Guessed is especially poignant here because Peter is threatening Lydia to DO WHAT HE SAYS by showing her images of her dead friends, of horror and awful consequences. Because he can not control her in the way Matt and Gerard control Jackson. Even under this much pressure, Lydia still has a choice - not a good choice, not a choice anyone should have to make, but she still has some limited form of power. And she still has a voice. She’s terrified and lost and alone, but she can still argue with Peter. She can still say “And what if I don’t?”

And I don’t know about you, but in a season where everyone is manipulated and doesn’t know all the facts, where everyone is under pressure from someone, where everyone makes shit choices because they are they best choices they’ve got, I really don’t see Lydia as an outlier. She fits right in with Allison and Scott and Derek in doing what they can under impossible circumstances.

Agency in narrative is tricky. But I do not believe that Lydia Martin is ESPECIALLY stripped of agency in comparison with the other characters around her, even in relation to the main plot. None of them act free of pressure. None.

But here’s one last example of what I mean.

Lydia’s party does not go well. Her nominal power to attract the jet-set has been taken away by the rumors of her crazy antics in the woods. Scott and Stiles and Allison decide to call in reinforcements. But. Lydia Martin is still the gatekeeper. She is still the arbiter of this narrative and she judges and decides who gets to be worthy of her party. That’s also agency. And it IS shown to us.

In the new season, Lydia is developing a power. It appears to be unconscious so far, but look how she works within the confines of it: she takes charge, makes decisions, acts. Lydia Martin is not powerless, never has been. The narrative puts pressure on all of them all the time. Some get more pressure than others, but none are truly free. Not even Scott. Sometimes especially not Scott. He was out of control, too. He was manipulated by Gerard, too. And he made bad choices under impossible pressure, too.

And I get it, the screaming and the PTSD look like stereotypically female horror tropes - the girl that can’t handle the pressure, the girl that does nothing but deny and cry and run away. But that’s not all the show is giving us, not even close.

I’ve been thinking about subversion and opposition a lot, how one is not more valuable than the other but both have their purpose. Subversion gives a certain legitimacy to the tropes it tries to deconstruct, just by saying “look at this, now look at it shatter” we are giving it power. Opposition in the storytelling sense is a big fuck you to convention, but it’s also hard to sell to people because we do love our trope-y conventions a lot. I love good subversion because there is a lot to love in many of the tropes themselves as long as they’re not unequally applied. I also really love just a straight up fuck you to everything that has power over us.

I think Lydia Martin is all about subversion. She’s powerful in her own way. Lydia Martin chooses to be who she is. She uses being beautiful and she hides her intelligence because that gives her power and Lydia Martin will do whatever the hell she wants in given circumstances.

So when I disagree that Lydia Martin has been given the short end of the stick so far, this is where I’m coming from. And yes, the screaming is so very very annoying, but I believe it will absolutely pay off.

And I can’t wait to see it.

These are interesting thoughts.

(via for-the-other-shoe)

ladyw1nter:

ladyw1nter: allydiasterek: alocalband: I feel like the odd man out here, but what…

tzzzztz:

allydiasterek:

alocalband:

I feel like the odd man out here, but what exactly is with this large subset of fans who are so adamant that their favorite characters be happy and healthy within the narrative before attempting to engage in an endgame relationship? Is this just a…

For me this is a purely sterek-related phenomenon.  All my other ships have been brilliantly dysfunctional (here’s looking at you, Thorki).  I’m even writing several sterek fics where the relationship goes nuclear and absolutely does not lead to a happy ending.  The only solution I can come up with to get the happy ending involves both of them having other relationships before the “end game.”

But even if the point of sterek is just to watch them together and not play for the happy ending, there’s a huge problem with the way this would affect the general character balance on the show.  I agree that two completely happy and healthy people together would not make for interesting storytelling, but neither does a relationship between two unlikeable characters.  Teen Wolf already suffers from this problem (probably because it portrays teenagers realistically and most of them are not very likeable) by throwing in a mix of redeeming traits for everybody (that give the characters hope of redemption) and by making them at least charismatic.  The problem with sterek is that the existence of canon!sterek (at this time) would make both characters very difficult to like, which would make the grand totality of unlikeable character traits on the overall show totally outweigh the good.  This isn’t the Real Housewives of Beacon Hills, we’re not just watching so we can see horrible people being horrible to each other.

Derek is not a nice guy.  He’s also stubborn, irresponsible, broody, angry, creepy, controlling and incompetent.  His only likable traits are: he’s always trying to do what he thinks is the right thing, he’s willing to make huge selfless sacrifices to spare others pain, and his portrayal as a victim gets him sympathy points.  Also, he’s really fucking hot.  

Getting in a relationship with Stiles while Stiles is roughly the same age he was when Kate, who was roughly the same age Derek is now when she ruined his life nukes pretty much everything but the hotness.  Derek (and his guilt complex) would never see getting involved with Stiles as the right thing, which means he’d be doing it for selfish reasons which knocks out his selflessness, and the worst thing a victim can do to lose sympathy is to turn around and do the exact same thing that was done to them (see Law and Order SVU for details).

Stiles, meanwhile, is a bit of a self-centered douchebag who is super inconsiderate, a know-it-all, who likes to be the center of attention and definitely thinks the ends justify the means.  His good traits are that he’s loyal and takes care of the people he cares about (but if he doesn’t care about you, watch out), he does a lot of narrative heavy-lifting (comic relief, most of the show’s exposition, emotional reaction shots, and he and Scott are the only two characters that have substantial individual relationships with all the other characters), and his awkwardness is kind of adorable.  He’s also got the witty bantar thing going on, which makes him fun to watch (especially with Derek).  All it takes to turn all of Stiles’s good traits into extensions of his bad traits is for him to get too cocky.  

The main thing keeping Stiles from megalomania is constant reminders that he’s at the bottom of the social hierarchy - he’s not popular, he’s not fully part of the pack, he gets romantically rejected, sometimes ignored by Scott, is the only one not having sex, has no superpowers, and is kept in a position of lusting after Derek’s approval.  All those things suck for Stiles (and that makes him more sympathetic), but without them he’d be like all the wacky douche-dance scenes in Spiderman 3.  

However, pushing too hard on the breaks on Stiles’s ego-train would also ruin all the spunky, wacky energy that makes him fun to watch.  Imagine how difficult to watch the sarcastic bantar between Stiles and Derek would be if it were out of a place of actual malice/bitterness/anger.

If banging Derek goes well for Stiles, he becomes an epically annoying douche.  If banging Derek goes poorly for Stiles (one of Derek’s bazillion issues breaks his heart or destroys his self-esteem), Derek descends to the depths of unlike-ability by destroying the spunky, fun-to-watch part of Stiles.

 So for me it’s not really a question of whether I want to watch healthy people or broken people or fucked up people; it’s whether I want to watch likable people.  Every good story of broken people with broken people is about how two broken pieces can make a slightly more complete whole.  Derek and Stiles as they now are just make a mess with more jagged edges.

I don’t want them to both become happy and healthy before they get together, but I want them to have removed a few of the landmines, specifically the underage problem and Stiles not being ready to have the ego-breaks removed problem.

(via for-the-other-shoe)

 1409
17 Dec 13 at 12 pm

silvarbelle:

obsessionisaperfume:

silvarbelle:

obsessionisaperfume:

ladyw1nter:

xkxdx:

scottsredhoodie:

you know

the fact that that stiles wears this gross, sexist shirt is bad enough

but when you consider the fact that his best friend is being raised by a single mom

and he wears this in front of said best friend without consideration?

it just kinda reaches a new level of awful :S

See, here, I get you. This shirt is gross, and wildly inappropriate, but… Stiles is kind of a dick. He is a dick to Scott, he is a dick to Derek. He is even kind of a dick to Lydia.

In the Macy’s, shopping for dresses, sure he follows her, all the while making a snarky comment about it being open 24 hours. This girl he literally worships. This girl is the girl he wants to impress and have a good time with, many different times, in many different positions. He feeds his Dad, the one person we know for a fact he would rather die for than see hurt, a shit ton of liquor for information. 

He is not soft or cuddly, he is not respectful without considerable effort, or threat of consequence. 

These shirts illustrate exactly what gets lost when you look at his beautiful, cute, cherubic face. Fandom constantly paints him all motherly and careful, a “pack mom”. That is not because he ever actually did anything to deserve that trope, it’s because we look at him and his boyish good looks and charm literally wipe clean the slate of his sins. 

He has definitely worn this shirt on front of Mom McCall. That’s probably one of the reasons why she doesn’t want him to have a key, and kinda looks at him sideways most of the time like she’s entirely unsure of what to do with him. 

Stiles is rude, and so far it’s been a large part of why everyone likes him so much. I’d burn that fucking shirt id I had the chance, but I don’t know if he could have done without it.

THANK. YOU.

people, please do not pretend that Stiles is a perfect unicorn because truthbomb: he isn’t.

Also flaws aren’t necessarily pretty, aren’t necessarily things that you can spin into strengths at a job interview. 

EXACTLY.

Stiles may feel compelled to protect the people around him, but it’s because he couldn’t protect his mom, not because he’s innately kind and caring.

True.  Don’t get me wrong: I love Stiles.  I adore that snarktastic fucker.  He is my literal favorite, even ahead of Derek Hale.

But Stiles is a JERK.  He’s an ASSHOLE.  He’s mean and a little cruel on occasion, but that isn’t ALL he is.  He’s a worried son, he’s a frightened kid, he’s a friend and a teammate and a bunch of other things.

But sweet and fluffy and kind is NOT his default setting.

Holy CRAP, yes. That thing with the dog bowl, and getting Scott beaten up, and flinging lacrosse balls at him under cover of “training,” those are not things that would even occur to Scott. Scott is a genuinely good guy and always has been. Stiles is a good guy, too, but he’s decided to be a good guy. Because really? Of all the characters on the show, Stiles is one of the most dangerous, even as a human. Stiles is Peter without the madness and the superpowers, and it’s a good thing he’s not a werewolf, because he’d be giving both Peter and Deucalion a run for their money. Which is one of the reasons I love Stiles as a character, actually, and I’m really hoping that he and Lydia are going to team up their giant brains, because if they do, the Alpha Pack is gonna be in a world of hurt.

Reblogging again ‘cause BAM - that’s it.  =D

(Source: maliathecoywolf, via hidethedamage)

 99
16 Dec 13 at 12 pm

ixilecter:

The horse in dr. Lecter’s office is a Chunar Horse Statue. The statue is reproduced after a carved original in the genre of a Tang Dynasty Horse, but is stylized after artwork from from the ancient town of Chunarin in India. 

And there are actually two other things it can reference - ‘the broken pony’ (it’s not acctually broken, but has holes) as Will is starting to crumble and the Troyan horse as Jack willingly pulled Hannibal inside the FBI investigations.

(Source: ixilecter, via hidethedamage)

 9974
15 Dec 13 at 12 pm

sidekickinit:

Okay, I’m going to need to spend a little bit of time talking about that last panel, because holy crap, that “YES!” was nearly unhinged. My love for this scene is off the charts - NOT ONLY because I don’t see any pedastal-ing of Lydia here, but because we’re three episodes in and Stiles is ALREADY fraying. I understand why Jeff Davis decided to jump four months in the timeline - it makes sense to reset everyone to a more even keel, even if in my heart of hearts I want all the angst. But man, Stiles did NOT end last season in a good place (however much they wanted us to think that via that final lacrosse scene), and I don’t believe for a second that he actually dealt with any of his issues.

This just reinforces that for me. He’s had four months of relative calm, four months where he got to repress repress repress and pretend he didn’t have anything to do but play lacrosse with Scott. Only now, within the span of DAYS, he finds out there’s an Alpha pack in town and that Erica’s (supposedly) dead. He’s dealing with the fact that Boyd and Cora are loose and probably going to kill someone, that Scott’s desperately trying to stop them before that happens, that Heather’s gone missing, and that Lydia has somehow stumbled across yet another body.

And I love that in this moment, he loses control; all of that underlying tension and fear and desperation break through for just a second, because shit’s going to get BAD again, he knows it. There’s no fucking question. I feel like this is him trying to keep control of the situation, but it’s already slipping through his fingers. He’s not going to be able to keep Scott safe, or Lydia safe, or his DAD safe. Things are spiraling already - before the night’s over, he’ll know that Heather’s dead, that he couldn’t do a damn thing to protect her.

He’s 16 years old, on no PLANET should he be someone’s first call when they find a body, but here he’s convinced he should be, because if he knows everything, if he has all the facts, then maybe he can stop it. Maybe he can keep the people he cares about safe.

(Don’t mind me, I’ll just be sitting here, waiting for his complete and total obsession with this mystery to start. Because if he can figure it out, he can stop it. And if he can stop it, then everyone he loves is safe.)

(via hidethedamage)

 500
14 Dec 13 at 12 pm

laheyism:

For a tattoo to show up on a werewolf’s skin, it must be burned. Right? Just like Scott’s was. Derek has a tattoo of a triskelion on his back, which also must have been burned in order to be visible. Now, a triskelion symbol has various meanings, among them is the ‘Alpha, Beta, Omega’ one mentioned by Boyd. The three spirals may signify Moon phases or Moon  creatures  like werewolves (lunar creatures are traditionally depicted with 3 legs, hence the possible interpretation), which is of obvious interest to Derek. What else? Well, a triskelion also means:

  • grandmother, mother, daughter
  • father, mother, child

Family. Derek’s family died in a fire. What I mean is:

Derek has a memento of his family tattooed onto his skin. The fire that killed them is also the means by which it as made visible on his skin. Think about it.

(via for-the-other-shoe)

hungrylikethewolfie:

Okay look here’s the thing.

Derek is an asshole.  Bless his heart, he’s really awful in a lot of ways; that’s part of why I love him as much as I do.  He’s not perfect, he has some really serious issues, and he tends to lash out at people like a big uncaring jerkface.  That being said:

1) Derek is an asshole in very specific ways.  His jerkish behavior is informed (though not excused) by his background.  90% of the time he lashes out it’s him projecting his belief of his own failures onto other people.  (See: “no one cares that you’re captain of the lacrosse team” to Jackson; “you’re not in love, you’re sixteen, you’re a child” to Scott; “if you start running you’ll never be able to stop” to Erica and Boyd, etc.)  Which could’ve meant an excellent opportunity in addressing Lydia’s involvement in raising Peter from the dead, because … well, Kate, anyone?  Causing damage to others (and knowing Peter, potentially fatal damage) because of an older, manipulative outside influence?  This is right in Derek’s Actual Living Projector wheelhouse.  There’s a lot that he could’ve said to Lydia that would’ve made it clear he was talking at least partially to himself, and we all would’ve cried, and he’d still have been an asshole but he’d have been in character for it.

Instead, if he knows what had happened to her and spoke to her the way he did regardless, that’s showing no indication that he believes it’s even relevant.  It’s holding her accountable for her actions while she was being psychically violated and manipulated/controlled, which is especially gross since he seems perfectly willing to work with Peter even though he doesn’t trust him.  The man who engineered the whole thing, who physically and psychically violated two teenagers, is a-ok, but one of his victims isn’t?

2) The way that Jeff responded to the question has made many people extremely uncomfortable.  There’s a good reason for that.  Having the dismissal of Lydia’s trauma treated in such a cavalier way is playing into the idea that it isn’t really a big deal.  It is a big deal.  It’s victim-blaming, it plays into a larger, overarching problem of a culture that holds women accountable for their own assaults, and it is a perfectly valid thing to be upset about.

ladyw1nter:

lierdumoa:

I keep seeing posts where people say, “But Kate Argent honestly believed she was acting for the greater good!” Or “Kate just had really strong convictions, and even though they were misguided, the fact that she had convictions is admirable!”

JUSTIFICATIONS ARE NOT BELIEFS. PREJUDICES ARE NOT ADMIRABLE.

Sexist politicans “believe” that girls should have their clothing and their bodies policed because of how detrimental their bodies/choices might be to the men around them and then insist that their pro-rape-culture policies are “for the greater good.”

Parents who beat their kids tell themselves “I’m just being reasonably strict” and “it’s for their own good.”

During the Inquisition, priests “believed” that any woman in a position of power was a witch, and tortured midwives and pagan priestesses to “save” them, and then killed them “for the greater good” of their patriarchal society.

Homophobes “believe” that gay marriage is corrupting the youth and destroying the stability of the American family and that it must be stopped “for the greater good.”

Black people were given segregated bathrooms because the white patriarchy “believed” that they would spread diseases and even had “science” to back up their “convictions.”

.

Kate Argent victimized a teenaged boy and then told herself that her actions were good and right because he was less than human.

This is predator logic. It doesn’t matter who is being victimized, predators always tell themselves that their victims are less than human, and that therefore anything done to their victims is justifiable, or that they are acting for the victim’s own good, or for the good of society.

Predators “believe” because it is convenient, because it flatters their egos, because it justifies their sins.

Kate Argent’s “beliefs” and “convictions” are a steaming pile of bullshit. People in this fandom need to stop covering that bullshit in whipped cream and sprinkles and calling it a sundae.

I need to point out two things that go along with this argument:

1) I like that Kate Argent was a female that took no prisoners and was unrelentingly badass in multiple ways

2) Kate Argent is a moral sinkhole and the complete opposite of a good role model.

I find it deeply sad and appalling that we’re forced to look towards moral sinkholes to find representations of strong/badass women who doesn’t act like society usually think women should act.

Additionally, I wonder how much of this is people watching too much SPN and getting themselves used to thinking with a ‘hunter’ mentality/POV.  There is no moral conviction that justifies killing, unless in self-defense.

[edit]

Additionally while Allison went off the moral deep-end, she is being shown as being regretful and reevaluating. Allison =/= Kate.

(via for-the-other-shoe)